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Understanding your right to seek accommodations at work

Your disability does not define you. In fact, you probably focus more on what you can do rather than on what you cannot do. You have the education, experience and skill to do the job for which your employer hired you, but you may need one or two modifications that will allow you to perform any non-essential duties the job requires.

Fortunately, the Americans with Disabilities Act prohibits employers from discriminating against you based on your disability. If you are otherwise qualified to perform the essential duties of a job, an employer may not refuse to hire you, promote you or allow you to remain in a position. In fact, the law compels your employer to provide reasonable accommodations to allow you to perform your duties at work.

What accommodations can you expect?

As long as your request for accommodations is reasonable and does not create a hardship or excessive expense for your California employer, he or she must find a way to accommodate you on the job. This may include any of the following or other modifications to your job or work environment:

  • Modifying your work schedule
  • Providing equipment, technology or devices to assist you
  • Moving you to an open position that is more suited to your condition
  • Providing training materials and other documents in a format appropriate for your needs
  • Providing an interpreter, reader or other assistant
  • Arranging the workspace, such as to accommodate a wheelchair

Your employer may not ask you about your disability, but you can expect your employer to inquire whether you can perform the essential tasks of the job and what type of accommodations you may need. If you will need modifications in your job or workspace, you should not expect your employer to assume this. You should feel free to approach your employer with your request and be willing to discuss the options that are best for all involved.

When is my employer discriminating?

Your employer may be discriminating against you because of your disability if he or she refuses to make reasonable accommodations that you request. Additionally, your employer should never charge you for any adaptations or services related to your disability or reduce your salary because you need accommodations to complete your duties.

If you feel your employer is not treating you fairly and the unfair treatment is related to your disabling condition, you have the right to fight back. You may find assistance when you reach out to an attorney for advice about your options.

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Lim Law Group, P.C.
3435 Wilshire Blvd.
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Los Angeles, CA 90010

Phone: 213-320-0941
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